Posted by darren
on July 14th, 2016
I want you to think of a number between 1 and 10 … it was 3, right?
No? Well that’s OK, I’m not a mindreader. There is no way that I can read your mind to reveal your innermost thoughts. It’s exactly the same with customers. If they are satisfied or not, there’s no true method of telling what they are thinking – you have to rely on them telling you. But how do you manage to get them to talk?
Get the conversation started
With so many businesses out there, most customers will “vote with their feet” if they’re not 100% happy with your service – and you’d be none the wiser. In fact, a typical business will hear from a tiny 4% of its dissatisfied customers . That means customers who don’t voice complaints is a silent majority of 96%. But the scary thing is this next statistic: 91% of these customers will never come back to your business , without so much as a word of goodbye.
How to listen to the silent majority
For every customer who bothers to complain, many other customers will remain silent. That’s why customer feedback is priceless. But how do you gather this info? It’s really important to set up a system to track complaints so you can fix them. Also, you should make it easy for customers to give feedback and tell you about their problems with your service. It may sometimes require a thick skin to sift through the feedback, but the value added to your business is worth it.
Turn bad press into good press
It’s human nature to focus on the negative, and people love to hear about drama. Did you know that news of bad customer service will reach over twice as many people as praise for a good service experience ? That’s why it’s so important to address any unhappy customers and try to remedy the situation. It’s obviously worth keeping their business, but also avoiding any negative word of mouth exposure is essential too.
So, in effect, the key to learning your customers’ thoughts is to actually ask them what they are thinking, then act on that info to make it better. It’s not about reading their minds, but reading their feedback.